Land of the Rising Sun – Hiroshima

Raw, Real, Horror

As children, my Dad took us to historical sites, museums, battlefields, and towns throughout the eastern United States. It instilled in me a great appreciation for history, and so, I was excited to be visiting one of the most historical sites of World War II.  In the next blog, I will get back to the more fun and joyful experiences of our trip.

Not many people, especially Americans, ever get to experience Hiroshima.  Two things I found most striking - the personal artifacts in the museum, and viewing the city the next day, from a distance, and imagining I was about to see the bomb detonate over the city.  I cried a little after exiting the museum. I am not sure why.  I did not expect to.  Perhaps, after seeing numerous movies and documentaries as a child, about the bomb, the harsh, up close reality of the personal stories and human tragedy shocked me

360 Mural

Nothing short of being there can truly communicate the horror of this event

In the picture above, the small square represents the amount of uranium that actually fissioned. That little square destroyed a city.

The remnants of the Genbaku Dome, to the left,  was the only building left standing near the hypocenter of the bomb’s blast. Designed by Czech architect Jan Letzel, it was completed in 1915 and housed the Hiroshima Commercial Exhibition Hall.  It is an anomaly, as everything else around it was flattened. It is a central gathering place for anti-nuclear and peace demonstrations. 

The mound below is the burial ground for hundreds of unidentified Japanese men, women, and children. 

I have read numerous essays about the use of the bomb. No matter what view you have, based on facts or emotions, it was unreservedly  HORRIBLE. 

 

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